The Rugby Cranes lose the Championship to the Kenyan Simbas following the five-point deficit at Home two weeks ago.
Nothing goes without surprise and this time, it was the Kenyans who were left startled by the inspirational performance of the Uganda Rugby Cranes, despite winning the tie at Legends.
The Rugby Cranes today held the Kenya Simbas to a 33-all-draw in the second leg of the Elgon Cup. The result means Kenya retain the Championship, edging Uganda by five points after the first leg 23-18 win to amass 56-points versus Uganda’s 51 on aggregate.
Uganda put up a good performance in the game through Phillip Wokorach, late entrant Mathias Ochwo and Charles Uhuru who combined for the early 8-0 lead.
It seemed a very difficult moment for the Simbas to recover but the same player that had Uganda running into mistakes in the first leg, Darwin Mukidza, kicked in a penalty after Moses Amusala was fouled to lead the Simbas’ resurgence. His inspiring form got the Cranes making the same mistakes like it was in the first leg to gain a 3-point advantage (16-13) before the break.
Kenya had a lot of expectations reading from the Cranes’ performance down in Nairobi for a positive result but it remains a looming disappointment. Since this game also acted as the first leg match of the Tier A1, renamed the Africa Rugby Gold Cup, Kenya were looking at a win as the only result needed to kick-start their campaign to the Rugby World Cup.
Kenya’s coach Jerome Paarwater admitted his side needed to work harder than they did today.
We have got to improve on our defensive shape and scrums in the coming matches”
Rugby Cranes’ Philip Wokorach was voted man of the match for his five penalty conversions.
— Kenya Rugby 24/7 (@KenyaRugby247) June 24, 2017
In the Africa Rugby Gold Cup, Uganda will be facing three teams from last year’s Division 1A; – Kenya, Namibia, and Zimbabwe, and two pool winners from Division 1B, Senegal and Tunisia.
The Africa Gold Cup will be running from the 24 June to 5 August 2017 and Uganda will be traveling to Dakar Senegal for the next game on July 1st.
The Rugby Cranes will travel with a team of twenty-three with the reserve team of four players set to end their journey in Kenya.